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Do you have any plans for Saturday 9 November 2013? Fancy getting together with a few other crocheters to crochet squares for a charity and/or make up finished squares into blankets? You can also join in a crochet quiz and try your luck with raffle prizes. How do you feel about baking and trying out other’s home bakes? Does this sound like your idea of a Saturday morning?  If so, you’re reading the right blog. I’m arranging all of this, and it’s in aid of Kidney Research UK.

crochet poster purple 9 nov

When:  9 November 2013 from 10:30 to 13:30

Where: The Vera Fletcher Hall 4, Embercourt Road, Thames Ditton, Surrey KT70LQ. More information on the location here. The hall is 50 yards from Thames Ditton station, which is on the South West Trains line between London Waterloo and Hampton Court. Parking is also available in the area around the hall.

Why Kidney Research UK: My husband, John, met someone who suffered from full kidney failure a year ago. Pieter had been on dialysis for 4 years and on the Organ Donor’s List. John was so moved by his suffering and story, that he decided he would donate one of his kidneys to him. Over the months of compatibility tests they became the best of friends, during which time we learnt that they were a very good match. The transplant operation was on 27 November 2012 and went extremely well. John’s donation also made history by being the first directed altruistic organ donation in the UK. It’s now 9 months later and they are both in very good health. Pieter wants to pay it forward and recently became a Board Member of the Kidney Research UK “Making EVERY Kidney Count” appeal, . Pieter has committed to raise £150,000 over three years. I want to help him in the only way I know how: crochet.

How will we help Kidney Research UK?:

1. By crocheting squares to be made into blankets for dialysis patients. Around 20,000 people receive dialysis every year. It’s an extremely unpleasant thing to go through. I’m hoping that lovingly made crochet blankets will help make the dialysis session just a little bit better.

You can start crocheting squares now. Any design of square, as long as it’s close to 15cm squared and you stick to shades of purple and white (as these are the official colours of Kidney Research UK). Please do not use wool as it may shrink or felt when the recipients wash their blankets on a too warm wash. Acrylics and cottons are best. I have purple and white 100% cotton yarn for sale in my Etsy shop that will be excellent for these squares. 25p From each ball sold also goes to Kidney Research UK. You can find the cotton yarn here.

You can make a traditional granny square, or my Granny Square in Bloom square, until it reaches 15cm squared. Step by step photo tutorials for these two patterns can be found here. The pattern has been translated into UK / Australian crochet terms on Spincushions blog here.

If you need more inspiration, Jan Eaton’s book 200 Crochet Blocks (there is a link to the book under the Books I Recommend section on the right) are filled with patterns for squares designed to be 15 cm squared.

Just remember that all squares have to be shades of purple and/or white and no wool.

On the 9th of November we will start crocheting the squares together into blankets, and crochet more squares.  If you can’t attend the get together, please post your squares to me. Squares from all over the world are welcome – the more the merrier.

2. Sales of raffle tickets. On the day we will sell raffle tickets for fun prizes. This blog post gives an idea of what will be raffled and also a sneak peek at the crochet quizz prizes.

3. Sales of coffee & tea. The cake to go with the coffee & tea is up to you….

4. Sales and donation of baked goods. Think of your entry fee to the crochet along, as something baked. Anything along the lines of a cake, cupcakes, muffins or tarts.  Everyone’s baked goods will be sold with the tea & coffee and all proceeds go to Kidney Research UK.  You can price your slices / goods whatever you think it’s worth. If baking isn’t your thing store bought goodies are absolutely fine.

3. Raising awareness of the work that Kidney Research UK does: Kidney Research UK will show a short video and Pieter and John will talk about their experiences in receiving and donating a kidney.

Things for you to do:

  • Please register on this page if you intend to come to our event on 9 November, or if you need my address to post the squares. We need to know how many people to prepare for, so please only answer Yes to the first question if you know for sure that you will be there.
  • Start making purple and/or white squares.
  • Line up the village baker/mother-in-law/neighbour to bake your entry fee, check out the cake aisle of your local Tesco, or browse through your recipe books.
  • Tell your crochet buddies and ask them to send squares or to come along on the 9 November.